Sharing the chores

Discussion in 'Teacher Time Out' started by silverspoon65, Dec 31, 2010.

  1. silverspoon65

    silverspoon65 Enthusiast

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    How do you share the chores in your household, whether it is you and a S/O or roomie, or you have a whole family to chip in?

    One of my NY goals is to come up with a plan to get the cleaning under control in my house. I wouldn't call myself a neat freak, but I am definitely neater than BF, and I think I care more about the appearance of our house than he does. It bugs me that I have to ask him to clean something and that he just can't see that it is dirty and clean it up himself. And I hate it when I ask him if he can do X,Y,and Z and then when I come home he is excited to tell me he did X and Y. It bugs me because he can never seem to just completely clean a room, but also that when he tells me all excitedly, it's like he did me a favor, which would imply that it's my job or something. Don't do it for ME, do it because it is our home and it needs to be done. It's like at school when the kids expect positive praise for doing something they should have done anyway.

    I am going to talk to him about all this and we are going to sit down and come up with a plan that works best for us. But I am just curious - what does everyone else do? Do you just clean up as needed? Do you split everything up throughout the week? Do you just clean on weekends? Do you use any kind of chart or list or anything? Does one of you do more than the other? Do you just hire someone?
     
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  3. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    We don't have a set plan, though after 21 years of marriage, we've fallen into some routines.

    But it's funny; we have such different outlooks.

    Every summer, Peter goes through the house like a whirlwind: he cleans out the basement, the garage, moves the furniture, and cleans under it. He gives the house the deep cleaning I never seem to get to.

    On the other hand, he'll let dishes pile up in the sink until he runs out of dishes.

    I try to stay on top of the day to day stuff (and frequently don't) but seldom tackle the really big projects.

    So we're a good fit.
     
  4. TeacherNY

    TeacherNY Phenom

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    This is my household exactly except my husband will do the "whirwind" thing at least twice a year. I have to do laundry and the dishes or there will be some sort of avalanche before he would do anything about it. He is about 90% in charge of the outside stuff/fixing broken things and I am about 90% in charge of cleaning the house. If needed, we will help eachother.
     
  5. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    That pretty much says it.

    And I shorted him; he does the same thing over February and Easter breaks, but on a smaller scale. (Christmas, with 2 holidays a week apart, we just try to keep the holiday clutter at bay.)
     
  6. TeacherNY

    TeacherNY Phenom

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    I have signed up for the Flylady emails and she gives you a list of "zones" that you should be taking care of to keep clutter to a minimum. My kitchen table seems to be a clutter magnet so I really need to work on that. The website is www.flylady.com and shes on facebook too.
     
  7. mrachelle87

    mrachelle87 Fanatic

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    Oh, Alice...you just described my husband. I was trying to get ready for Christmas eve at our house on Wednesday. I was asking for help cleaning. The bathrooms needed cleaning, the floors needed sweeping, the living room needed vacuuming, and etc. But what does he do, he cleans out the closet in the hallway. WHY????? Who is going to open it? I am stressing and he is cleaning a closet. He didn't understand why it bothered me. He does that. I will say we need to clean and he will get up and clean the garage. I MEANT THE TOILETS!!!! No one in my house cleans the bathrooms, except me.

    Could your husband and mine be twins that were seperated at birth?
     
  8. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    When we were first married, we were having company for dinner on a Saturday night. I was still coaching Speech and Debate. I got home from a tournament at about 6; company was expected at 7. So Peter was pretty much in charge of getting the apartment ready.

    What do you suppose he was doing when I got home??

    Cleaning between the rungs of the kitchen chairs!!!! NOT washing the dishes in the sink from his breakfast and lunch, NOT cleaning the bathroom or the general clutter, but DUSTING between the rungs of the kitchen chairs!!!!
     
  9. knitter63

    knitter63 Groupie

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    My husband and I share the cleaning chores when I am not on breaks.Like today, he is working a half day, so I will clean when I can get off this computer! :)
    However, my son has always helped out. He will do the dishes for me, or help my DH and I clean on a Friday night. We clean weekly due to having two dogs in the house.
    Now, when it comes to cleaning the garage-that is all my husband. That is his domain! I offer to help, and I am allowed to sweep the floor. :)
     
  10. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    You just described mine. :lol:
     
  11. cutNglue

    cutNglue Magnifico

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    The reason that he comes up to you excited is because he is trying to please you. He doesn't see it the same way you do but he knows it is important to you. Because it isn't his thing he won't be able to maintain it to your liking but he is saying that he tries. I'll give you a huge hint... when you recognize your partner for these attempts, you get more of them than if you get on to them about the stuff they don't do. That doesn't mean that you don't need to compromise or talk about it. It just means you have to have some realistic expectations as well and you have to recognize when your partnership is working.

    Positive praise, while it shouldn't be expected, works wonders on everyone in all situations. Don't knock it. If your boss compliments you, you beam and want to do it more. That's human nature. It goes for kids and adults alike.

    Having said all that, of course we grumble about each other. That's human nature too. But I don't see it as something that is a given which is what it sounds like you expect it to be. People that live together will have different visions. Expect it.
     
  12. AMK

    AMK Aficionado

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    If I ask (nag) he can/will do it. I am not sure he knows what a sponge is and he maybe as used our vaccum once.
    That being said he goes through spurts where he organizes the kitchen, the basement and the office.
    I blame his mother and father whenever we are visiting them he doesn't clean up after himself.
    He takes out the garabage, changes all the toliet paper rolls, puts away his laundry etc..
    I spent hrs the other day cleaning and doing laundry. I left him a message telling him not to ruin the house and please try and keep it clean - he is trying. He is completly in charge of the things outside and the garage.
     
  13. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    Some people just aren't good at seeing what needs to be cleaned. My husband can't seem to see a sink full of dirty dishes either and I don't quite understand why. Rather than get irritated or frustrated at that, I've discovered that it's just easier if I say, "Hey, honey, can you put those dishes in the dishwasher?" There, done. When we're doing more heavy-duty cleaning, like preparing for company or something, I'll give him more specific directions. "Can you make sure that all those books are put on the bookshelf, fold the blanket on the couch, and pick up all of Indy's toys?"

    I'd certainly prefer it if he could just see for himself what needs to be done, but for whatever reason he can't. I still love him in spite of this one little flaw, so it's not worth getting into an argument over. So in order to keep my life peaceful and drama-free, I have just learned to work within that and explicitly ask him to do what needs to be done.
     
  14. Ima Teacher

    Ima Teacher Maven

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    We do both.

    Growing up, Mom did pretty much everything. Dad worked full time, and I was always in school or working. She was a SAHM. During the summertime when I wasn't in school or working, I'd help out with things. When Dad retired, he started taking over some things.

    When we married, DH was working less than part time, and I was working full time. He did all of the housework because he was home with more time. Now he's gone a lot of the time, and I've taken over everything. He's been home for a few days this week, and he did vacuuming earlier. He also likes to cook.

    Our house really never gets all that dirty, and neither one of us are clutter people. It's just the two of us--no kids, no pets. I'm here by myself over half the time. DH has very little "stuff". I have lots of stuff, but I'm super organized.
     
  15. MissFroggy

    MissFroggy Aficionado

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    My SO does all of the household laundry. I do everything else... she will clean the kitchen if she cooks, or tidy the house with me before people come over. My SO also does a lot of the home repairs and all the tech stuff.

    I do a deep clean about once a week, where I do the bathrooms, clean the fridge, vacuum, etc.
     
  16. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    This is becoming a major problem in our relationship. Sigh. :(
     
  17. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    My dh and I have it split to where he does the outside cleaning (mowing, garbage, etc) and I do the inside. I am VERY blessed to have a daughter that loves to help me clean so she does the dusting, cleaning her room, and vaccuming.
     
  18. Danny'sNanny

    Danny'sNanny Connoisseur

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    When I was finishing school and dh was working full time, I did pretty much everything (except taking out the trash. I don't do that!!!).

    Now, I have the full time job, and he is part time from home. He does most of the house chores, I help with laundry, do the cooking and grocery shopping.

    The house is not as clean as I would like it a lot of the time, but he tries. And I appreciate whatever he does get done!
     
  19. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    I do think that it is important to show gratitude when he does work around the house. It may not be your job to thank him for doing something that he should be doing anyway, but it is your job to show him that you appreciate him and what he does for your family.
     
  20. mrachelle87

    mrachelle87 Fanatic

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    I discovered the secret. If I give him options he will help. So one option is always to clean the toilet. I say, "Honey, would you please either fold clothes or clean the toilet?" He folds clothes. Then I say, "Honey, will you please clean the toilet or vaccum?" He vaccums. It works everytime...sometimes for variety, I add a third option. It is usually mop...he hates mopping as much as cleaning the toilets.
     
  21. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Our way works out very well for us.

    I take care of the big picture, he attends to the details.

    I do the laundry and the dishes and the cooking, he takes care of the cars and the outside and the stuff the kids are constantly breaking.

    We shift roles as needed, and somehow it all gets done and everyone is, for the most part, happy.
     
  22. Danny'sNanny

    Danny'sNanny Connoisseur

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    I have also found that asking for "just 10 minutes" will help a lot.

    DH wants to take a whole day, when I am NOT home (he hates cleaning if I'm home, which makes long breaks a little messy looking around our house...)

    Sometimes I don't want to wait till we have a whole day. I just want everything picked up and dishes done! If I ask for 10 minutes, he realizes that all I want are the big, manageable pieces, and he is more willing to help. Too often, he gets stuck on "well I didn't want to spend the whole day on the house" when all I needed was a little bit
     
  23. silverspoon65

    silverspoon65 Enthusiast

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    I am surprised at how many women seem to be doing the majority of the house work.

    My mom also did all of the housework. My dad did pretty much nothing. They BOTH worked full time. She was always stressed and regularly stayed up into the wee hours doing laundry or other housework. I do NOT want that. I guess I just feel like it should be shared. He does take care of the cars - that might be a once a month occurrence. He also mows, but that is only once a week in the summer. I take those chores into account when we split up the chores, but I don't think they totally excuse him from doing housework, too.
     
  24. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    I agree, silver.
     
  25. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    True.

    But, more often than not, Peter is working one or two nights a weekend on photography, along with several afternoons/evenings during the week.

    So it makes sense that I'm doing the lion's share of the housework, since I'm actually home to do it.
     
  26. Elocin

    Elocin Comrade

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    We split it until we had kids. Then slowly it was ALL falling on me--the house and the kid stuff. Pretty much the only thing he took care of was the garbage, the cars and the yard (and our yard only needs tending for about 5 months.....).

    Part of it was my fault......I didn't notice how much was shifting until I realized how I unhappy and overworked I felt. And I went back and forth between being a SAHM, working PT and working FT so it was a really natural progression.

    Finally we had talk and it was straightened out. He didn't even realize how little he had been contributing. Now we pretty much just do what needs to be done and it is back to the equitable division like when we first got married......and our marriage is a lot happier too!
     
  27. TiffanyL

    TiffanyL Cohort

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    "The most important work we will ever do is within the walls of our Home" ~Harold B. Lee

    I do most of the housework in our home but my husband is such an excellent partner that I don't think about it much. He is not lazy by a long shot and is always doing something to keep busy!
     
  28. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    I love him and all :), but my husband is still under the impression that my school breaks should be a whirlwind of cleaning and scrubbing and organizing, as though I have nothing else to do. I don't see this problem being resolved anytime soon...although we did buy lottery tickets for the first time, so hopefully we'll win a few million tonight and this worry will go away. Ha!
     
  29. TiffanyL

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    There have been times in our marriage where I handle it all with breeze, and times when my resentment seems to build.

    Sometimes, I LOVE being a housewife who also has a full-time career and, other times, I think...."Yeesh, can't anyone else handle this!!??"

    Just depends on the mood, I guess.
     
  30. dizzykates

    dizzykates Habitué

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    We worked hard to split it evenly for a while, but it comes down to the fact that I notice things more than he does. They bother me, not him so I have a choice, clean it or don't let it bother me. I choose to clean.

    He is great about doing things if I ask though, my best option is to catch him before he sits down with a game or something. "Honey, would you mind _____?" Then he'll ask if there is anything else I need. If I know I have a lot to do, but am not quite sure what I need him to do, then I come up with something small so I have some time to think. Often I'll just ask him to set the table and get drinks and then after that I have a few more things thought up for him to do while I finish up dinner. It works out pretty good.

    We also will do timed cleaning runs. We have chores written out on cards, with points attached, and we'll decide on a time limit and then we do whatever cleaning we want, but the winner gets the prize. Last week that meant he had to take me out and buy me coffee with his fun money...it was a fun date to look forward to and our house was clean top to bottom in 45 minutes because we both worked hard the whole time and neither of us took a break.
     
  31. MissCeliaB

    MissCeliaB Aficionado

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    I just shared this with my husband, and he admitted that it sounds like it would quickly turn into him buying my dinner for cleaning the house. Which is basically what happens now.
     
  32. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    Update: Well, we didn't win the lottery last night, so off to clean here in a bit. ;)
     
  33. bandnerdtx

    bandnerdtx Aficionado

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    Dizzy, that's sort of what my mom does, too! Dad gets rewarded for chores he does. :)

    As a single mom, I sometimes wish I had help with the big stuff like the lawn, cleaning the gutters, garage, fixing broken things, etc, but at least I know that it's always done *my* way. LOL. My daughter just keeps her room and bathroom clean. The little things are easily managed, though, because it's just 2 of us.
     
  34. Irishdave

    Irishdave Enthusiast

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    This knuckle dragging Cro-Magnon should stay out of this thread
    But my opinion is, we men are hard wired not to do cleaning it is a evolution thing,:p:lol:

    [​IMG]
     
  35. Securis

    Securis Cohort

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    I do it all once a week and sometimes every other week if I'm really busy.
     
  36. gigi

    gigi Groupie

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    I do the majority of the cleaning, laundry and cooking. DH takes care of the cars as well as the outside work. I don't mind this at all, he works two jobs, but if I ask he will jump in and do whatever needs to be done.
     
  37. dizzykates

    dizzykates Habitué

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    So true! lol..hadn't thought of it that way...he helps me out and then he also "loses" his fun money...might need to rethink my strategy before he catches onto that!!
     
  38. mmswm

    mmswm Moderator

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    As a single mom, I can't do it all. My boys take on a lot of the work though. They each have chores when they get home from school, so I don't have an overwhelming disaster when I get home a few hours later.

    Matthew does laundry and the morning litter box. He doesn't fold, but there's usually a load or two for me to fold when I get home. He's also responsible for wiping down the surfaces of their bathroom and is the "lead" with cleaning the kitchen.

    Stuart cooks dinner (Matthew helps on night when it's more than heat up veggies and serve what's in the crock pot), and takes care of the afternoon litter box.

    William takes care of general clutter, vacuuming the living room (sometimes Stuart does this) and emptying trash from the other rooms.

    All three of them clean the kitchen after they eat, and pick up their own messes and clean and vacuum their own rooms)

    I take care of the heavy cleaning (mopping, cleaning out from under and behind furniture, bathroom scrubbing), folding laundry and taking down the trash (usually).

    We all help with clearing snow, though I do the lion's share of the work with that.
     
  39. Kindergarten31

    Kindergarten31 Cohort

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    I did most of the "inside" chores until my husband retired. Now he does almost everything (cleaning, shopping, laundry, etc) except cooking dinner, but he does grill. I am not always happy with the way he does things, but I am just THRILLED I don't have to do them. But when I am home for Christmas or summer or spring break, I get to do all the chores! It is a break for him. I grouch to myself, since I am spoiled, but don't complain to him. And he is a brother to all those other husbands who don't know how to prioritize. We were having people over for Christmas, and he went out to clean the garage! AARRGG! But I just bite my tongue and thank my lucky stars.
     

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